Matt Gemmell

TOLL is available now!

An action-thriller novel — book 2 in the KESTREL series.

★★★★★ — Amazon

Countdown to the Apocalypse

personal 4 min read

It had to come sooner or later; the first substantial post of the new blog. Note that I said “substantial”, rather than “interesting”. So, what to cover first? I guess the most significant event at the moment is the fact that Fiona is moving out this Sunday, and into her new halls of residence in preparation for the upcoming academic year. This will be the first time in almost 3 years that we’ve not lived together.

We remain good friends and still feel close to each other, despite intermittent arguments which I suppose have to be expected. I’m grateful for the past 3 years with her, and I regret that we didn’t work out in the end. I really hope she finds a great guy to take care of her and continue her journey with her. I also plan to remain part of her life and enjoy her friendship.

I confess to wondering just how it’ll feel on Sunday after I’ve helped her move into the new place, and I drive back. No doubt strange and quiet, and somewhat melancholy, but I think that’ll pass before too long. Probably a good idea to plan something for that evening, so I’m not hanging around and dwelling on everything (or rather, out driving aimlessly over miles of country roads, dwelling on everything). Chris has already offered a night of videogames and DVDs, so I may well take him up on that.

Next up, my summer placement. As I mentioned, the code is now complete, and I’ve run the evaluation with the various other people on placements in the lab. The results were surprising and interesting, and the project went very well in general. Karen’s away in South Africa on holiday at the moment, then she’ll be on an industrial placement for a few months, so I just need to finish up the project report and email it, and I’m done. I’m really glad I took the studentship, and not least because I got paid more than anyone else. ;)

I’ve been working on a couple of songs lately, which are coming on surprisingly well. Had a bit of mental block with lyrics for a day or two, but that seems to have passed. Inevitably at a time like this, and indeed probably just inevitably when writing songs at all, one focuses on the aftermath of relationships, and coming to terms with being solo once again, and the other concerns my view of the future with regard to getting involved again (or not). I guess there’s not a hell of a lot more I can say about that without offering up some downloads, which I will in due course. Obligatory mention that GarageBand rocks, though I’d be more productive if I could resist the temptation to set a Real Instrument track to Big Electric Lead Guitar, and just play the MIDI keyboard through it til my speakers start to shake themselves apart. Unbelievably ace.

That all leads us on to the topic of the girl I was interested in recently, though I’ll only say a few brief words about this; I feel that I’ve already said pretty much everything that’s important to the relevant parties. Any waxing lyrical about how good it might have been, or how well-suited I thought we were, are of course entirely moot, and probably not wise to dwell on anyway. Suffice to say, she’s ace - but then you’d expect no less, right? As I mentioned on Irate Scotsman, it didn’t work out, but not in the sense that I actually made any move; I was pre-empted by her getting together with someone else before I’d really said anything. I’d say that’s a far better outcome than a knock-back, and I speak as someone who had a killer rejection a month or two ago (excerpt: “It’ll never happen / I don’t think we should be in contact for the foreseeable future”). Thankfully I can look back on that now and laugh, or so I tell myself.

I’m thinking that since I’ve spent so long in serious relationships, that I’ve become someone who’s finding it difficult to adjust to my newfound single status; that’s all normal enough, and to be expected. I’m just also concerned that, for the same reason, I’ve lost all ability to know when someone is interested or not, which is a damn worrying thing. Like any Computing Scientist worth his salt, I’ve been the recipient of countless “you’re such a nice guy” kind of half-compliments, and I’m well aware of how and why it’s the kiss of death in relationship terms. That said, I don’t go out of my way to be a nice guy, and had previously thought I was reasonably well-balanced between being decent and being damn bad. God knows I’m comfortable with who I am, and how I conduct myself in general. Too comfortable, perhaps? I don’t know how to make that determination.

I’m aware I’m not the greatest looking guy around, but I’m not short on personality (insert obligatory joke about shortness of stature here, guys - cheers), and in my experience that tends to count for quite a bit more. I’m doing my best to chalk up recent events in that area to just bad luck, bad timing and general entropy, rather than indicating some deeper problem somehow integral to me as a human being. Meh, I guess we all get such periods of self-doubt, and I suppose I’m long past due. The prospect of being Alone Forever has lost much of its oppressiveness in the last few days, and I’m resigned to concentrating on other things from now on.

Well, that was pretty heavy-duty. Apologies for the comparative lack of breezy banter and shameless posturing you’ve come to know and love; we’ll get back to that very shortly. One other thing first, though: a quick vote of thanks to certain folk who’ve listened to me go on about all this continuously for the past few weeks. I’m really thinking of three of you in particular: The Man himself, and two who I should probably allow to remain anonymous; I guess you know who you are. Much cheers for letting me bounce my thoughts off you, and hopefully I’ve returned the favour adequately. Big love to you, and extra coreness.

Right, back to life. Chris and Iain are at their final meeting with Phil and Ray right now, so I have the entire lab to myself. I think I’ll maybe go and practice some wall-running, Matrix-style. Here’s hoping someone drops by before long in case I actually break my ankle this time instead of just spraining it.

Wire-fu, -Mx